CHARLESTON, W.Va. - Newly released documents provide additional details about the Labor Day slayings of a Doddridge County family.
Joseph Spencer, 16, told police he used his father's 9 mm pistol to kill his father, Fredrick Spencer III; his mother, Dixie; and his 9-year-old sister, Patience, in their Mastons Road home near West Union.
Police and court officials initially were tight-lipped with details about the slayings because of the suspect's age.
But Doddridge Circuit Judge Tim Sweeney granted a motion Wednesday to transfer Joseph Spencer to adult status, unsealing all court documents related to the case, including the initial criminal complaint against the teen.
According to that report, Doddridge County Sheriff's Deputy C.W. Modesitt was dispatched to the Spencer home about 6 p.m. Sept. 3, Labor Day.
Joseph Spencer called 911 himself, telling operators he had shot his family members, according to the report.
Modesitt apprehended Spencer as soon as he arrived at the residence and placed the boy in his police cruiser. The deputy then began searching the buildings on the property.
The teen's grandfather, Fredrick Spencer Jr., told the Daily Mail last month his son, a commercial pilot, had taken a few months off work this summer to build a log home for his family. The house wasn't completed so the family was living in a garage apartment on the property.
That is apparently where the shootings took place.
The grandfather also told a Daily Mail reporter the only gun he knew of in the house was a handgun his son carried with him at all times. He said cargo flights do not receive the same kind of protection passenger flights receive, and the firearm gave his son an added sense of security on potentially dangerous international flights.
Modesitt came across Dixie's lifeless body first, "lying outside at the feet of the porch steps, dead from apparent gunshots," he wrote in the report.
Moving through the front downstairs door, he found Patience, also dead from multiple gunshot wounds. Modesitt walked up the stairs to the apartment where he found a third victim, Fredrick Spencer III, in a back bedroom.
"(Joseph) Spencer advised that he loaded the 9 mm handgun belonging to his father and shot all three family members before calling 911," the deputy wrote.